By Daniel Boan
Meghan Markle’s style has undergone a major transformation ever since she left her acting days behind to join the royal family. The former “Suits” star’s wardrobe has transitioned from casual ripped jeans toformal designer dresses that are more in-line with the royal family’s traditional style.
During a recent visit to Ireland in July, Markle surprised royal-watchers by switching up her look with a black Givenchy pantsuit. The bold outfit seemed to suggest that she still isn’t afraid of taking a few risks with her wardrobe every now and then.
According to the Daily Mail , a source indicates that Prince Harry might not have been the biggest fan of that style choice.
Daily Mail reports that several fashion teams have recently visited Kensington Palace to discuss Markle’s wardrobe for the couple’s upcoming royal tour of Australia in October. A source from one of the teams told the publication that Markle has expressed interest in pantsuits and tuxedo-style outfits, but Harry reportedly wants her to choose something more traditional.
“‘Meghan is being told she needs to stop dressing like a Hollywood star and start dressing like a royal,” the source told the Daily Mail. “Meghan wanted to wear a tuxedo-style suit but Harry said it wasn’t traditional enough.”
Though this news is highly speculative at this point, it still raises the question: what should you do if your partner isn’t a fan of your wardrobe?
For relationship expert Susan Winter, the idea of controlling a romantic partner’s clothing is simply “absurd.”
“For those of us who are not a princess, what we wear is our business,” Winter told INSIDER. “To have a romantic partner dictate our clothing would be absurd in this time period. No person in a relationship should feel beholden to their partner’s clothing and style preferences.”
However, April Masini of the Relationship Advice Forum thinks it’s important not to immediately dismiss your partner’s concerns.
“If your partner doesn’t like your wardrobe, don’t immediately go on the defensive,” Masini told INSIDER. “Consider what it is about your wardrobe that is rubbing them the wrong way. Knowing why they want you to change is very important, so don’t blow up — slow down and talk about what’s going on.”
As for Markle and Harry, constantly being in the public spotlight may complicate matters.
“However, for those in high profile positions where they’re representing their country, understanding the protocol is important,” Winter added.
Winter also notes that Markle and Harry’s wardrobe choices will be under higher scrutiny than most couples, as Markle will certainly impact the perception of the royal family in modern times.
“She’s an independent woman who is walking the tightrope of connecting her new family to the modern times in which we live,” Winter said. “She will certainly have a major influence as to how we all perceive royals in the future.”
Whether you’re in a high-profile relationship or not, both experts advise that finding the cause of your partner’s discomfort is the first step to resolving any conflict.
While this seems easier said than done, Winter says considering these three questions can help get to the root of why your partner feels a change of wardrobe is necessary:
- Is it for a sense of modesty (that makes them feel more secure)?
- Is it for showing off to their friends and making you an object of attention (for their own edification)?
- Is their request solely self-motivated (with no benefit to you)?”
Once the root of the problem is addressed, it should be easier to determine how to move past it.
“Knowing the reason behind your partner’s need for you to change or compromise your style allows you to consider whether their request is valid or not,” Winter told INSIDER. “Then, you can make your own decision as to how you proceed.”
If you do determine the request is valid, Masini adds that compromising a little can be a healthy habit for both parties in the relationship.
“Being in a relationship means you give a little — or a lot,” Masini said. “If you don’t want to bend on anything, you’re going to have a rough time down the line. But if you’re willing to bend a little, now and then, you’re much more likely to make your partner feel good about the relationship and about you.”
Masini also suggests using the conversation as an opportunity to voice any concerns you may also have with your partner, and even consider taking them along for a “light and funny” shopping trip to playfully work through the problem.